Sunday, November 4, 2012

Running: My Thoughts

While this running thing is still in the infancy stage, I can't deny I plan to watch it grow into something big.
WHY?  Why has it taken hold?
Last week I had an experience, an aha moment, if you will.
It was Thursday night.  I had not gone for a run since Saturday at the Color Run.  I was tired.  In fact, I had practically fallen asleep on the couch just before leaving for the gym.  My mental state could not take a negative hit, or so I thought, so I was debating just jumping on the elliptical for an hour.  I can do the elliptical in my sleep.  It isn't much effort. 
Nope.  I decided I was going to work out on the matter what.
I met with my old friend the treadmill.  We have a love hate relationship, me and that machine.
As I started my 5K Trainer, I noticed this run was going to consist of a 5 minute walking warmup, an 8 minute run, 5 minute walk, 8 minute run and then the 5 minute cool down.
I know for all you runners that doesn't sound like much.  You have to understand, the simple fact that I am even talking about running seems out of sorts for me.  Only a few months ago, I could barely run down the block. I have never ran.  EVER.
So, I started my trainer.  I figured I would just do my best.  No More.  No Less.
Long story short.
I.  Did.  It.
I did it well!  Not going to lie, it was hard.  It was almost at my limit.  I say almost.  Heck, I don't know what my limit is.
Once I finished the second 8 minute run, my running partner (on the treadmill next to me) stopped his run and gave me a hug.  He cheered for me.  He acknowledged my effort.  And then it hit me.
This rush.  This beautiful, intense, overwhelming rush of everything.  I heard voices telling me I couldn't do it.....mostly my own.  I heard voices telling me, YOU! GO! GIRL!  The tears began to flow.  Not blubbering sloppy mess tears.  Cleansing, warm, grateful tears.
Then I realized why I love this running thing.
There is almost nothing in my life with a guaranteed return.  I clean the house and 30 minutes later you can't tell.  I complete all the laundry in the house one day only to find more waiting for me the next day.  In relationships, I give everything I have only to find my efforts gained me nothing but lies and broken dreams (the reason for my recent diagnosis with PTSD.....from men.....true story).  As parents, we try our best to raise our children and their really is no guarantee there either.  I write a chore list and it may or may not get done.  :) 
Not the case with running.
All I have to do is show up.  Running has never failed me.  My body has never failed me.  We have a perfect alliance.  I move.  It moves.  It demands more of me.  I give more.  I say I can't do it.  It says it is time for more.  My body says bring it on.
So this running thing.....I think we are nurturing a beautiful bond together.
I see all the physical benefits.  I am experienceing them.  However, for now, I run to running for the emotional and mental benefits.  All I have to do is show up.
In this line, the kids and I have signed up for a 5K for Thanksgiving morning.  Best to start healthy traditions now and get the running bug started with them.
One last thing.
This last Saturday I had the opportunity to take a friend to the start of a half marathon called the Just Cuz here in Pocatello.  People dressed up as zombies, wore tutu's, dressed normal or just did whatever.  One guy was in Hawaiian print.
The beautiful part was being at the finish line as the runners came in.  I saw some runners with stoic faces as they advanced their last stretch.  I watched some with joy all over their face.  I saw mothers that radiated when their kids ran out to them and held their hands as they ran to the finish together.
That's what I want.  Necxt year.  Twelve months from now I will run that race.  I shared with my littles how amazing that would be if they would run out there to usher me to the finish line and they all said yes.  Except my 14 year old.  He wants to run the race with me.  HECK YA!!!!
So yes, this running thing isn't going away any time soon.
LOVE YOU ALL!!!  You are so worth it!!!


  1. When I spoke at Fitbloggin about how running proved to me that I can be trusted, this is EXACTLY what I was talking about. That switch from "Oh I can't do that" to "OMG I JUST RAN FOR EIGHT MINUTES!" that's running's perfect moment. That is proving to you your own self-worth.

    Way to go, and keep on running!

  2. That's great- I totally remember the days when I would struggle to run 1 mile, take a long break to catch my breath & then run the mile back to my dorm room. You don't realize how "out of shape" your body is until you try to tell it to do something new. I still feel this way even if I try zumba or swimming or crossfit- I'm always amazed at how conditioned I am to running (now) and out of shape for anything different-lol! This is why I have come to adore yoga too- all you have to do is show up- no distance, no speeds or finish lines, even meditation or breathing in child's pose is enough (or all I can do ) some days.

  3. I love reading your posts. The way you write flows so well like we're having a conversation. I also love where you are on your journey right now. I'm SO very excited for you about your 8 minute runs. I know exactly how big of a deal that is! So picture me dancing and jumping up and down and high fiving you in glee! WOOT!

    I wrote about running today too and how I'm finding myself in a different place with it these days and I'm glad.

    PS - you ARE a runner, don't ever forget! ;)